ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai: Lesson Plan Ideas

Updated on July 7, 2018
Source

Thanhha Lai’s Inside Out & Back Again is the story of a young Vietnamese refugee girl, Ha, and her family’s escape from Vietnam at the end of the Vietnam War. This novel follows the diaspora story of a family being forced to abandon their home, flee their homeland and move to new place. From the perspective of a 10 year old girl we experience life in Vietnam, a harrowing journey to America and the immense task of adjusting to a completely foreign place, language and culture. While young readers will benefit from learning the historical and cultural context surrounding the novel, they will also discover that Ha’s immigration story is quite a familiar one. Students will marvel in how universal Ha’s story of survival is. Lai’s mix of poetry and prose creates an emotional tale that will especially appeal to middle school readers.

Source

Lesson Plans

Harper Collins Publishing has created synopses for several books. This one for Inside Out & Back Again includes a brief description, 15 detailed discussion questions, creative class projects, and background on author Thanhha Lai. While these synopses are only 2 pages long, most include innovative ideas that teachers could easily build on.

http://files.harpercollins.com/HCChildrens/OMM/Media/InsideOutandBack_DG_FINAL.pdf

Another great resource for literature is Scholastic.com. Scholastic has a book group section that includes Reading Group Guides for several books. This guide includes pre-reading activities, questions for discussion and written response, vocabulary, and extension activities that include poetry analysis, interpreting similes, and family interviews/profiles. They also provide websites for students to research and explore major themes in the novel such as immigration in America.

http://teacher.scholastic.com/clubs/pdfs/guides/inside_out_guide.pdf

This six-page study guide for Inside Out & Back Again has detailed descriptions of the plot, themes and conflicts in the novel. There is also a more in-depth biography of the author. The most beneficial aspect of this study guide are the 4 pages of detailed study notes and discussion questions with page numbers.

http://www.uqp.uq.edu.au/store/images/hi-res/teachersnotes/1225/2980.pdf

Engage NY has an 8th grade ELA module for Inside Out & Back Again that closely aligns with the Common Core Learning Standards enforced by New York State. This unit plan includes ideas on free verse narrative poems, character analysis, examining an author’s word choices, supplemental informational texts, an analysis essay, and creating a model “Inside Out” poem. This unit is over 500 pages which includes detailed plans of each assignment, application of learning standards, graphic organizers and rubrics.

http://www.engageny.org/sites/default/files/resource/attachments/8m1.pdf

Source

Internet Resources

NPR has an audio Immigration Series based on research conducted by NPR, the Kaiser Family Foundation and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. The segment entitled Immigration in America: The Vietnamese gives students a lot of background information on how the Vietnamese-American community in particle coped with the obstacles of immigrant life in the United States.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4078900

PBS has numerous clips of interviews with Vietnamese Americans and Vietnam veterans that analyze the costs and consequences of the Vietnam War. Even if you do not have time to show clips of this series in class, the website still is a helpful resource. The detailed information on each country’s role in Vietnam, descriptions of specific events, timelines, and maps provide a historical perspective that will surely help your students better understand Inside Out & Back Again.

"Getting Here: Journeys from Vietnam"

https://www.pbs.org/video/getting-here-journeys-from-vietnam-2k59hq/

"Vietnam: Another View"

https://www.pbs.org/video/vietnam-another-view-libeph/

"Reflections on Vietnam"

https://www.pbs.org/video/reflections-on-vietnam-cbam8g/

"Reporters in Vietnam" Episode 3

https://www.pbs.org/video/clip-episode-3-reporters-vietnam-ecdxsu/

"Vietnam Stories: Chuck Berberian"

https://www.pbs.org/video/vietnam-stories-chuck-berberian-srnafg/

"Vietnam Conversation"

https://www.pbs.org/video/vietnam-conversation-1t4esq/


Source

“Our lives will twist and twist, intermingling the old and the new until it doesn't matter which is which.”
Thanhha Lai, Inside Out & Back Again

Web Research

I often find it useful when teaching students a piece of literature that has a historical, political, and/or cultural connection to provide the background information necessary to understanding the text. Below are links to websites to inform students about Vietnam, Vietnamese-American immigration, refugees, and various human rights issues. I suggest that teachers explore each website ahead of time to find what information is appropriate for both their students and their unit plan.

The American/Viet Nam War – an overview by Asian Nation: Asian American History, Demographics, and Issues

http://www.asian-nation.org/vietnam-war.shtml

Vietnam Embassy in the U.S.

http://www.vietnamembassy-usa.org

U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants

http://www.refugees.org

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/home

American Friends Service Committee – information and resources about peace, human rights, and humanitarian service around the world

http://afsc.org

Digital Storytelling Videos by Immigrants and Refugees

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=E085E2DF04ADFB63

Source

Author Interviews & Book Reviews

Below are a collection of news articles, websites and videos that may be used to enhance your lesson plans.

Thanhha Lai's website has biographical information, interviews, discussion guides and book reviews.

https://www.thanhhalai.com/inside-out-back-again/

Thanhha Lai's Acceptance Speech at the 2011 National Book Awards

Thanhha Lai reads from Inside Out & Back Again at the 2011 National Book Award Finalists Reading

Source

I hope this compilation helps any teachers who are either teaching Inside Out & Back Again for the first time or looking for new, fresh ideas. As a teacher, I would suggest that you do not copy these plans word-for-word and use them as your daily script. Instead, use the various ideas as inspiration to shape and mold classroom lessons that fit your own teaching style and students. Good luck and have fun!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)